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Nashville Company Moves, Processes Mulch With Doosan

Wed March 25, 2020 - Southeast Edition #7
Construction Equipment Guide

One of two Doosan DL300-5 wheel loaders that Alternative Energy Products added to its fleet due to its long-standing relationship with Bobcat of Nashville.
One of two Doosan DL300-5 wheel loaders that Alternative Energy Products added to its fleet due to its long-standing relationship with Bobcat of Nashville.

It is the capital of Tennessee and one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States, boasting more than a half-million residents, according to the Nashville Business Journal. It also is home to local businesses like Alternative Energy Products, a leader in the mulch and soil industry.

The company was founded 30 years ago by Kyle King's grandfather-in-law, who noticed there was a need for a mulch supplier in the area. His strong work ethic has led to years of success for the family-owned company. In fact, no other supplier in Nashville takes on volume as high as Alternative Energy Products.

"We perform contract work in the city of Nashville and surrounding cities to grind trees into mulch," King said. "We are an alternative to the landfill, and we recycle wood and make products for beneficial reuse. We have about 400 customers now and haul 125 tractor trailer loads per week during our busy season."

Sought-After Solution

Mulch is a sought-after landscaping product, which is used to retain moisture, regulate soil temperature and suppress weed growth. The products produced by Alternative Energy Products are used for decorative mulches, top dressing additives, erosion control, walking trails and International Play Equipment Manufacturers Association (IPEMA) certified playground material. Hardwood derived from trees which are grown in Middle Tennessee is the material used by Alternative Energy Products for all its products. Heavy equipment plays a prominent role in the mulching process and is why Alternative Energy Products decided it was time to upgrade its heavy equipment.

"When I first started four years ago, we weren't processing as much, but now it hasn't stopped," King said. "As we grew, we kept doing more and more and our equipment couldn't keep up."

Today the company operates three facilities in the Nashville area. It depends on its equipment to sustain its growth. As a solution, the company met with its local equipment dealer, Bobcat of Nashville, and upgraded its fleet with a Doosan DX225LC5 crawler excavator and two DL300-5 wheel loaders.

"My grandfather had built a relationship with the dealership for many years and decided it was the right fit for us," King said. "It really came down to the warranty options, so he took the leap and it's been great."

Using Doosan equipment and attachments, the mulching process has become simple. It begins with customers notifying the company that they have a stockpile of trees to process. Then Kyle and his crew transport the DX225LC-5 crawler excavator and a grinder to the site, where the excavator is used to load trees into the grinder.

"Many of the city sites can be kind of tight," King stated. "But, the DX225LC-5 works out great since it's so mobile and versatile."

Switching between buckets is simple with the excavator's hydraulic quick coupler. An operator can press a button inside the excavator's cab and swap buckets in a matter of minutes. King pairs the excavator's bucket with a thumb to efficiently grab organic material before it's loaded into the grinder. Once the material is processed, the DL300-5 wheel loader is paired with a 10yard bucket to load the material into a truck, which is transported back to the company's yard. Then the wheel loader stockpiles the material. Eventually it will be processed again through a separate grinder, and then it dries for 48 hours. After that, the organic material is loaded into the coloring machine, where it colors 300 yds. of mulch in an hour.

"The DL300LC-5 is the only wheel loader that can load the coloring machine," King said. "We manufacture 17 different products and a variety of specialty blends of soil amendments and top dressing for landscapers and golf courses. Obviously, these stockpiles take up a lot of room. Our Doosan wheel loader can pull up to the material instead of us having to build a ramp like we had to for our previous machine. We are saving a lot of time."

After that process is completed, the material ages on site until it is ready to be loaded and distributed to customers. Once it is ready, area landscaping companies purchase the mulch. In a sense, it completes the circle of putting the natural material back in the community.

"With Doosan wheel loaders we have taken our business to the next level," King stated. "It now takes me seven minutes to load a truck compared to before when it was taking 20 minutes with smaller wheel loaders with a six-yard bucket."

About Doosan Infracore North America LLC

Doosan Infracore North America LLC, headquartered in Suwanee, Ga., markets the Doosan brand of products that includes crawler excavators, wheel excavators, miniexcavators, wheel loaders, articulated dump trucks, material handlers, log loaders and attachments. With more than 150 heavy equipment dealer locations in North America, Doosan is known for an unmatched dedication to service and customer uptime, and durable, reliable products. Doosan is fast becoming a global force in heavy construction equipment.

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